Thursday, August 3, 2017

Dotan Zuckerman Flees Fuqua to Join Pfohl at New Firm

Dotan Zuckerman has resigned his position at Atlanta's Fuqua Development to accept a new job at Columbia Development Group (CDG) in Columbia, South Carolina. ToNeTo Atlanta was first to report last April when Zuckerman chose to leave North American Properties (NAP) to join Fuqua Development. While ToNeTo Atlanta first learned of  Zuckerman's departure late last month, his new title and role was made official today in a release from his new firm.
According to the release, Zuckerman's title will be Principal and Vice President of Leasing and his primary role will be leasing at the firm's new East Cary Gateway development in Cary, North Carolina, part of the state's Research Triangle. The $1 billion, 95 acre development is located off Cary Town Boulevard and will include up to two million square feet of retail, restaurant, office, hotel and residential space.  

While at Fuqua Development, Zuckerman led the leasing efforts of The Battery Atlanta at SunTrust Park, the 74 acre, $400 million, mixed-use development adjacent to the new Atlanta Braves stadium SunTrust Park.  

Zuckerman's previous work at NAP included leasing at both Atlantic Station and Avalon.  Avalon, with which Zuckerman was involved from the beginning, is an 86-acre, $600 million, mixed-use development in Alpharetta.  Many in the real estate community see the East Cary Gateway development as an "Avalon copycat."  While that may be partly true, the project's current site plan has no movie theater, and is instead anchored by a huge 120,000 square foot Wegman's grocery store. 

The developer does, however, hope that Zuckerman will be able to replicate the leasing success at Avalon in the Cary project.  

Having Dotan join our team is a tremendous gain not only for Columbia Development Group, but also for the future of the East Cary Gateway development,” said Abbitt Goodwin Jr., a partner at Columbia Development Group’s Raleigh office. “His past involvement with incredible properties like The Battery Atlanta and Avalon are a testimony to the outstanding vision we can expect him to also bring to Cary.”

Among the carryovers between Avalon and The Battery Atlanta are Antico Pizza Napoletana, CRÚ Food & Wine Bar, Goldberg's Bagel Company & Deli and The El Felix.  
While I doubt Goldberg's will venture out of state (especially as Avalon underperforms and The Battery is not yet open), Zuckerman could be successful in persuading others to whom he has leased in the past to join the Cary project.

At Columbia Development Group, Zuckerman will be reunited with Ron Pfohl, also formerly of NAP.  Pfohl, who is currently the firm's Director of Leasing, reportedly left NAP this past April, shortly before the debut of Avalon's second phase.  Pfohl's departure from NAP was reportedly unexpected, said to be related to disagreements between he and NAP's Mark Toro.  While Pfohl's LinkinIn page currently lists him as Partner, Director of Leasing, for NAP, he was officially announced as Partner and Director of Leasing for CDG in a press release on July 22.  

Pfohl has more than 30 years of experience in shopping center leasing and development. Prior to joining NAP in early 2011, Pfohl co-founded Forum Development Group, a developer of specialty retail and mixed use centers including The Forum on Peachtree Parkway in Norcross.  Prior to Forum Development Group, Ron was senior vice president of development with Cousins, where he was instrumental in the development of the firm's "The Avenue" projects.   

Sources say that Dotan sees Pfohl as a mentor in a way that neither Mark Toro (NAP) nor Jeff Fuqua (FD) ever were.

Have you visited both Avalon and The Battery Atlanta, if so , which do you prefer? Are you familiar with Cary and the Research Triangle?  Are you looking forward to the day that Atlanta gets a Wegman's?

Please share your thoughts below.  


Anonymous said...

Cary = Containment Area for Relocated Yankees

Anonymous said...

I can't stand any of jeff fuqua's projects ... Soooo boring and ordinary! Kennesaw marketplace sucks. It's hard to drive around. No easy traffic flow. Someone needs to be fired.

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